Learning through speaking
Learning how to play the guitar without ever touching one is rarely the approach people take. It probably wouldn’t work very well, right? On the other hand, if you have never heard the sound of a guitar in your entire life, having a hands-on approach with it would be pretty much pointless. The key is having a lot of listening exposure to get familiar to the sounds, but also to have tons of hands-on practice. See where I’m getting at?
In language learning, the hands-on part (aka speaking) is often very neglected. Most of us actually study a foreign language in school, and although we may reach a certain level and understand a good amount, we rarely speak it. Unfortunately, the purpose of language classes in grade school is not communication, it is passing your exams. When school is over, we usually forget most of it, because we never use what we learned.
Most people will feel some level of foreign language anxiety, especially when starting out. But the good news is that after a few conversations, the idea of trying to be perfect often goes away. Even if you take some time to find your words, you eventually understand that there’s no need for any anxiety. Speaking in a different language is a wonderful experience and it’s likely what you are aiming for.
The sense of accomplishment after completing a conversation in a different language is greater than you can imagine. Depriving yourself of that experience for months and months would be a shame. We highly encourage you to start speaking as soon as possible.
Now you might say: “Good advice wise guy, but how am I supposed to do that?”. Easy - attend one of our Essential Speaking Seasons to really use the language as you learn it.